I am motivated to better today than I was yesterday because I understand there are no limits to my potential. I understand that if I reach for and work for it I can accomplish it. I have long since rejected the notion that others can define me and put me into a box of their liking. I have accepted that I control my own future and that future is not yet written but is an empty page waiting for me to write the story. I know that today I will be the best I can be with the knowledge that tomorrow I will be better.
It is those individuals who believe themselves to be leaders but are too lazy to acquire the knowledge required to effectively lead. Who remain in the background in times of adversity and struggle, shielding themselves at the expense of those around them instead pointing fingers at others. Those who look to take all the credit for success but deflect responsibility for failure are not leaders but rather cowards. Their actions inspire nothing more than contempt from those they are tasked with leading and their tenure is ultimately doomed to fail.
Great leaders understand as spider man once said with great power comes great responsibility. They stand by their people. They do not look to point fingers as a way of absolving themselves but understand that as the leader they must be willing to stand up and accept the criticism for each failure. They immerse themselves in the job understanding in all things knowledge is essential because without it their leadership is simply an illusion based on nothing more than bravado and arrogance.
The time for these individuals is usually short and once their time has passed and their chance to stand up and be a leader is forever lost history will record that their tenure to be nothing but a delusion of grandeur extinguished by a power far greater than they had hoped to ascend to, the power of the masses. Leaving them with nothing but time to wonder how they could have been a leader rather than coward.
You say it is disrespectful to our servicemen and women but you wouldn’t give up one football Sunday to volunteer at the VA hospital.
You say it is disrespectful to the flag but you turn a blind eye to the basic tenants the flag represents. Such as All men are created equal and individual Liberty: The principle that each person is born with freedom from arbitrary or unjustified restraint.
America is a complicated country founded on the principle that all men are created equal while at the same time it was openly embracing slavery and allowing legalized discrimination until as recently as the 1960s. Full of so called patriots who embrace our military but at the same time are willing to turn a blind eye toward the problems many soldiers encounter after they return home. A country whose richness was built upon the various contributions of immigrants whose diversity is one of its strongest qualities yet still has a large group of people who reject immigration and segregate themselves in their own communities afraid of the unknown from a different race or culture.
Despite all its flaws America remains the greatest country in the world but it can be better. We as a people are tasked with ensuring that it reaches its unlimited potential. To achieve that promise it is sometimes necessary for the people to engage in Nonviolent resistance to facilitate social change through symbolic protests and civil disobedience. Every time this is done there will be those who disapprove those who wish to keep the status quo but as Richard Dawkins said
“when two opposite points of view are expressed with equal intensity, the truth does not necessarily lie exactly halfway between them. It is possible for one side to be simply wrong.
We should never be afraid to raise our voice against injustice it is our moral responsibility to see that our country live up to principles it was founded on. To do any less would to be complicit in the failure of the promise that is America. As H.L. Mencken so eloquently stated
“The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naïve and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair.”
So continue to shine a light on social injustice. Continue to demand that America live up to her promise. Reject those who would have you simply accept the status quo. After all dissent is the highest form of patriotism.
Your dreams do not end at daybreak. It is at daybreak that they should just begin, daybreak is when we begin to make our dreams a reality. Understand this, life is not for the timid not for those who let so called destiny guide them. Life is full of exciting possibilities but those possibilities are only reached by those among us who understand that our dreams our possibilities are rarely a gift of destiny but something that must be earned. It is only those of us who are bold enough to define are own destiny by meeting life and all of its obstacles head-on who will achieve those dreams. Each new day we must commit to being bold and not settle for what life has in store for us but take on life with our dreams as our guide. Only then can our dreams become reality, only then can we reach our full potential, only then can we truly be happy.
Ok NFL players you showed your unity this past weekend with varying displays of so called anthem protest but now is the time to bring the narrative back to its original intent. Yes you should continue to kneel, continue to lock arms or whatever form of protest you feel is appropriate. No you should not allow this President to deter you. But when a microphone is placed in front of you and you are asked about disrespecting the flag and the servicemen and women. Do not allow the narrative to be changed. Tell them emphatically NO I will not play that game. Tell them I kneel to protest social injustice. Tell them I kneel to protest police brutality. Tell them I kneel to bring to light the way people of color are treated in many aspects of society today. Tell them you love America as much as anyone and as such you demand it lives up to its promise. Tell them you respect this country’s servicemen and women and as such I kneel because the 40% of the military made up of ethnic minorities should not have to return to a country where they or their family may be subject to police brutality or discrimination based on the color of their skin. Tell them I kneel not as a sign of disrespect to this country but as a sign of respect for the values that it was founded on, the concept that all men are created equal. Tell them I kneel to force those who would choose to turn a blind eye to these injustices to feel uncomfortable to the point that they will finally open their minds and begin a dialogue on how to truly make this country great. Tell that this is why I kneel.
It is the person who embraces the unknown who learns to reject fear and open their mind to new possibilities. With new possibilities comes the prospect of growth and growth is the essential process of all existence. It is when we cease to grow that we can no longer imagine what we may be able to accomplish. We stand in place and wither away. Neither bold enough to dream of a better future nor seize upon the opportunity to move forward when it presents itself.
Alien #1: You are prepared to come before this council today with your recommendation on the humans?
Alien #2: I am.
Alien #1: Then this evaluation hearing shall come to order and you may proceed.
Alien #2: Thank you as you know I have always been a proponent of the humans as a species It is no secret that I have always found they are rather unique. Above all other life on Earth they are special because of their cognitive ability. When I was first tasked with evaluating them it was my hope that when faced with differences they would respond as many of our species have and use this ability to find common ground, to learn from each other and to grow as a species. Unfortunately that is not the case. Rather when faced with the unknown of another group my research has shown they choose, since the beginning of their time, not to use this ability to grow as a species but to make us versus them decisions along lines of race, ethnicity, gender, language group, religion, age, socioeconomic status, and so on. That combined with the human thirst for power and money has led them to turn their back on at best orto attempt to subjugate or even kill the other group at worst. This undoubtedly has stunted their development as a species over time yet they still do not change. Why? Well I have theorized and in my opinion their actions have proven this to be true the human mind despite all of its unique and special characteristics is lazy. When I say lazy what I mean is the human mind prefers to be comfortable. It is more comfortable to accept that which is familiar than that which is different. Even when they come to the realization that their actions are morally wrong and counterproductive to their society as a whole It is more comfortable to ignore this than to confront it. More importantly it appears that it is in their nature to live in the moment at the expense of their species future’s greater good, one can see that in how they treat their own planet. Coupled with their creation of and need for a socioeconomic system in which each group strives to climb over the other. One can only surmise that over the course of their history there has been the loss of great minds that may have developed over time in the groups that have resided near the bottom of the chain. Minds that if not extinguished would have flourished and led to the growth of the species as a whole. Regrettably it is this lack of self awareness that they are all human that I must say while having many tremendous qualities has proven they are clearly not ready to join us at this time.
Alien #1: Your recommendation has been entered humans admission to the the Advanced Collective of Universal Planets has been denied at this time.
The narrative has been lost. It was never about the flag or patriotism it was about social injustice and police brutality. But the fact is that topic makes people uncomfortable and no one likes to be uncomfortable, they rather close their eyes or change the narrative then confront the ugly truth and look for ways to improve it. But since our current President has decided to change the narrative, because social injustice is an issue he appears to be squarely on the wrong side of the debate on, and make this about patriotism I thought I remind him of the words of James Baldwin. If he can somehow grasp the meaning of Baldwin’s words then maybe he will understand what it really means to be a patriot.
Its clear you live in a bubble when you look at an athlete especially one of color kneeling for the national anthem and you see a protest against the flag. Because it’s obvious to anyone who has a sense of history that it’s not a protest against the flag it’s a protest against the way the country the flag represents treats people of color and if you believe that people of color are treated with the same set of rules as white people you simply refuse to acknowledge the reality of this country’s history.
You do not get to invoke the bravery of the service people of this country when you found away to avoid service when you were called to “represent the flag”.
You do not get to invoke respect for our service people when you decide that service people willing to serve this country who are transgender are not worthy of wearing the uniform simply because they are transgender.
You do not get to forget the service people of this country who fought for freedom under this flag in a world war who upon their return home were told to get to the back of the train so white German POW could ride in the front. I’m sure those heroic service people of color still respected the flag they fought for but questioned the motives of the country that flag represented.
You do not get to call out anyone, regardless of their current income, who are willing to stand up against abuse they, people of their family or people of their community have been subject to when you can not truly understand their feelings on the subject because you nor anyone in your family have ever been or never will be subject to the same type of treatment.
You do not get to hide behind your twitter denials, your claims that fake news is looking to destroy you when It has become apparent who you are and who you are speaking to when you speak with such passion about this topic especially when looked at in contrast to your muted tone when talking about white supremacist who marched through Charlottesville chanting racist slogans and carrying tiki torches in an attempt to mimic iconic images of fear from years past. It is clear you are not speaking of just athletes but rather you saying to your base look at these uppity niggers how dare they. You are with me right. Remember when we used to just put them in their place and not have to deal with this? I do and yes like you I long for those days. Days when America was great.
Fortunately you do not get to stain our country forever. You have faked your way to the top. You have awaken the dwindling number of Americans who still think as you do. But you also continue to unite the majority of us who reject the pass sins of this country. You continue to show the world that despite America’s temporary lapse in judgement which gave you your platform you currently have the majority of us reject your beliefs. Your time is short, you are not a king, you are not a dictator, you will soon be a footnote in our history a cautionary tale for our future.
We shall overcome